Where do bunnies and Easter eggs come from? What is their significance?
To begin with, I must point out that the New Testament does not mention such a practice among the early Christians. In fact, the practice of Easter is not mentioned as we keep it. However, we know very well that this event took place and that is why today we celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The origin of red eggs
As for the tradition of giving colored Easter eggs, it is believed that their origin comes from the Anglo-Saxons who in ancient times worshiped the fertility goddess Ostara, and in spring worshipers placed on her altar seeds and eggs that symbolize fertility.
One version is that the Christian missionaries, going to carry the message of the Gospel, sought to communicate it clearly in the language understood by the locals and therefore took this symbol of the colored egg to communicate to the natives about the resurrection that all will have who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. In fact, all people will have a resurrection, except that those who have been born again by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ will be resurrected to eternal life, while those who have rejected the gospel message will be resurrected for judgment and spend eternity in the torments of the lake of fire and brimstone.
Christians painted the eggs red to convey a very important message, namely that only through the blood of Jesus Christ can we be washed of sin and there is no other option, for it is written:
“knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.” (1 Peter 1:18-19 NASB)
The origin of Easter bunnies
It is assumed that the tradition with the Easter bunny also comes from the same Anglo-Saxon legends. According to their mythology, Ostara (the goddess of fertility) turned a bird into a bunny that made colorful eggs for children. It is also known that Lutherans were the ones who began to use this bunny more often. However, the origin of this tradition remains quite unknown.
How do we proceed?
We have every reason not to use any of them, that is, neither colored eggs nor the Easter bunny, and to celebrate without them. On the other hand, in my opinion, it will not be wrong, it will even be good for us to make use of this tradition and to preach the message of the Gospel. If we also paint red eggs, then whenever we offer such an egg or receive one as a gift, let’s talk about the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and about the eternal life and resurrection that we have only through faith in Him, and from there let us tell the message of the gospel to all people. For, with great sadness, I must say that most people who paint, buy, give and receive red eggs make no connection between them and the gospel message, and everything they know about Easter is limited to these eggs or bunnies. May the Lord keep us from falling into this meaningless tradition, which has overshadowed eternal truths.
Translated by Aliona Soltan